The choice between Mobile Passport Control (MPC) and Global Entry depends on your specific travel needs and circumstances. Both programs offer expedited processing for travellers entering the United States, but they have some differences:
Mobile Passport Control (MPC):
- Cost: MPC is typically less expensive than Global Entry. MPC is often free or available for a nominal fee, while Global Entry costs $100 for a five-year membership.
- Application Process: Applying for MPC is generally simpler and can be done directly through the Mobile Passport app on your smartphone. You create a profile, provide passport information, and use it immediately.
- Eligibility: MPC is available to U.S. and Canadian citizens eligible for the Visa Waiver Program (VWP). It’s also available to U.S. lawful permanent residents.
- Limited Locations: MPC is available at a limited number of U.S. airports and cruise ports. You should check if your arrival location supports MPC.
- Features: MPC allows you to complete your customs declaration on your mobile device, generating a QR code for faster processing at customs and immigration.
- Cost: Global Entry costs $100 for a five-year membership, but it includes benefits beyond expedited customs processing, such as TSA PreCheck for expedited security screening.
- Application Process: Applying for Global Entry involves a more detailed application, background check, and an in-person interview at a Global Entry Enrollment Center.
- Eligibility: Through reciprocal agreements, global Entry is available to U.S. citizens, U.S. lawful permanent residents, and citizens of certain other countries.
- Wider Availability: Global Entry is available at many major U.S. airports, making it more widely accessible.
- Features: In addition to expedited customs processing, Global Entry includes TSA PreCheck, which allows you to go through security screening faster at participating airports within the United States.
In summary, if you travel frequently and value the convenience of expedited security screening within the U.S., Global Entry may be a better choice due to its broader availability and the inclusion of TSA PreCheck. However, MPC can still provide faster customs processing at select locations if you’re looking for a more budget-friendly option and have limited travel needs. Ultimately, the choice depends on your travel habits and preferences. Some travellers even choose to use both programs for maximum convenience.